Police looking for two sex attackers as reports of sex crimes spike around NYC

·3 min read

Police are hunting for two sexual predators who have struck in separate incidents across the city — adding to a troubling spike in the numbers of sex attacks.

In the latest incidents, one man assaulted two women over the span of an hour in Manhattan early Saturday, police said.

He first struck at Central Park West and W. 82 St. on the Upper West Side about 4 a.m. — running up to a 23-year-old woman from behind, pulling her to the ground and molesting her on the tree-lined street, police said. The victim was taken to Mount Sinai Morningside Hospital for a medical evaluation.

The assailant, meanwhile, sprinted away on on foot but eventually hopped onto an e-bike and rode south on Central Park West, continuing downtown until he approached a 28-year-old woman at Avenue A and E. Fourth St. in the East Village around 5 a.m., cops said.

He then threatened that woman — telling her he had a knife — and pulled her to the ground as he did an hour earlier uptown. This time, he dropped his pants and forced his victim to perform a sex act, police said. The man never pulled out a knife, but the woman suffered abrasions to her body during the attack and was taken to Mount Sinai Beth Israel Hospital, cops said.

Last month, a man bizarrely dressed as a cowboy and carrying a guitar on his shoulder assaulted a woman on a Queens street, cops reported.

Dressed in a beige cowboy hat and slinging a blue guitar, he groped the 30-year-old woman from behind at 2:10 p.m. June 10 on the corner of Roosevelt Ave. and 103rd St. in Corona, police said.

The victim, however, confronted her attacker, and he cowered, running off.

The brave, quick-thinking woman followed her attacker a block and a half to a home on 40th Rd. by 102nd St., where he changed out of his cowboy garb, cops said. She pulled out her phone and videotaped him walking into the house dressed in the getup, and when he emerged he was wearing a short sleeve black shirt and blue jeans, police said.

Police are still searching for the man, described as about 20 years old, roughly 160 pounds and 5-foot-6 with a medium build, brown eyes, a medium complexion and short dark hair.

In a breakdown of the recent attacks, the most recent NYPD data shows reports of sex crimes on the Upper West Side are up 100% this year compared with the same time last year. As of last Sunday, two people in the upscale neighborhood have reported they were the victims of a sex attack this year. At the same time last year, just one person had reported a sex crime to police, according to the data.

And in the Lower East Side’s Ninth Precinct, just one person reported a sexual assault, NYPD data show — a welcome downtick compared with last year, when two people reported sex crimes.

Yet overall across the city, sex crimes are up this year, the data show.

There have been 115 sex crimes reported to police as of July 10, compared with 97 during the same period last year. The figure is an 18.6% spike, according to NYPD data.

Despite the rising numbers, rape incidents are down this year. Data show that so far this year there have been 33 incidents of rape compared with 37 at the same time in 2021.

Anyone with information on the sex attacks is asked to call Crime Stoppers at (800) 577-TIPS.